Understanding student's participation in physiotherapy and nursing work settings

Lieke Ceelen*, Anne Khaled, A.F.M. Nieuwenhuis, E. de Bruijn

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Students’ health profession education includes learning at the workplace through placements. For students, participating in daily work activities in interaction with supervisors, co-workers and peers is a valuable practice to learn the expertise that is needed to become a health care professional. To contribute to the understanding of HPE-students’ workplace learning, the focus of this study is to identify affordances and characterise student’s participation during placements. We applied a research design based on observations. Three student-physiotherapists and four student-nurses were shadowed during two of their placement days. A categorisation of affordances is provided, in terms of students’ participation in activities, direct interactions and indirect interactions. Students’ daily participation in placements is discussed through unique combinations and sequences of the identified affordances reflecting changing patterns over time, and differences in the degree of presence or absence of supervisors, co-workers and peers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)65-85
Number of pages21
JournalAdvances in Health Sciences Education
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2023


  • Affordances
  • Health profession education
  • Nursing
  • Participation
  • Physiotherapy
  • Placements
  • Supervising
  • Workplace learning


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